Thursday, May 7, 2015

Steven Spielberg Bringing Brave New World to Syfy


Steven Spielberg’s production company, Amblin, is set to adapt the classic Aldous Huxley novel, Brave New World to Syfy. The 1932 book is considered one of the top 100 novels written in the 20th century by Modern Library.

Brave New World is set in a world without poverty, war or disease. Humans are given mind-altering drugs, free sex and rampant consumerism are the order of the day, and people no longer reproduce but are genetically engineered in “hatcheries.” Those who won't conform are forced onto “reservations,” until one of the “savages” challenges the system, threatening the entire social order.

“Brave New World is one of the most influential genre classics of all time,” said Syfy president Dave Howe. “Its provocative vision of a future gone awry remains as powerful and as timeless as ever. Promising to be a monumental television event, Brave New World is precisely the groundbreaking programming that is becoming the hallmark of Syfy.”

Syfy has undergone a resurgence lately with some fairly captivating programming. 12 Monkeys is their most popular, but they have also produced a number of classic novel adaptations that will be coming to the small screen, including Childhood’s End, 3001: The Final Odyssey, and Old Man’s War.

via Outtplaces via Hollywood Reporter

Steven Spielberg Bringing Brave New World to Syfy is a post from: Good e-Reader

Energy eReader Pro + with Carta Screen Released

Energy Sistem has introduced an updated version of the Energy eReader Pro, called the eReader Pro +, that upgrades the screen from E Ink Pearl to E Ink Carta. This is the same upgrade as the Boyue T62+, as they are the same device with different brands. Carta screens are E Ink’s newer display technology. […]

Camera board extension

We’ve just spotted a third-party add-on for your Pi and Camera Board which we think you’ll find really useful.



The ribbon cable that comes with the Raspberry Pi Camera Module is, for reasons of signal integrity, not very long. In most cases, that doesn’t present a problem. But if you’re wanting to take pictures of something that has to be a distance from your Pi – some fiddly nature photography setups are a good example – the length of that cable can be a nuisance.

So the good folks at Petit Studio have made a useful HDMI extension kit. Both the Camera Module connector and an HDMI connector have four data buses made by pairs of cables with a ground shield, which means a small converter can be built: they’re offering two little PCBs which attach to the ribbon cable and to the back of your camera board, with an HDMI cable bridging the space between them.



The makers have tested the setup with 5m HDMI cables, and the picture quality is not affected (you won’t be able to run this with an infinitely long HDMI because eventually the signal will degrade); you should be able to use a longer cable too, but you’ll need to experiment. Perfect if you want to put a camera on the roof when your Pi is in a bedroom, or if you need to put somewhere inaccessible to use as a camera trap, but want to be able to get to the Pi itself easily. We’re pretty sure a lot of you will find a use for this kit. You can buy your own for about £10 at Tindie.

We love it. Simple and very, very useful. Thanks Petit Studio!


Will Europe Become a Single Market for e-books?


The European digital publishing industry is fragmented beyond belief. Every single member country has their own VAT rate on e-books and a massive loophole was closed that allowed foreign entities operating out of Luxembourg, driving prices up. There has been talk for a number of years about a single European market for e-books, simplifying the book selling process.

The European Union is the world's largest economic entity, bringing together 28 countries into a single market that accounts for 20% of world imports and exports. When it comes to e-books though, Europe is hardly unified. France for example has a number of laws that prevent the discounting of e-books, due to laws that protect the traditional print industry and bookstores in general.

Selling e-books in Europe is challenging. Everyone used to be based out of Luxembourg and charged 3% VAT on e-books in every country in Europe. On January 1st 2015 the European Comission mandated that VAT will be payed based on where the buyer is located and not the seller. The United Kingdom, for example has a 20% VAT on e-books and the Irish Republic VAT is 23%. Germany charges 19% VAT, Luxembourg 3% VAT, Spain 21% VAT and Italy 4% VAT. Doing taxes on a business end are more complicated due to the different filing systems.

Can Europe ever be a single market when it comes to selling e-books? Well, it might happen sooner, rather than later. The European Comission revealed yesterday that it would hold an antitrust competition inquiry into the e-commerce sector in the European Union, as part of 16 initiatives on a digital single market to be delivered by the end of next year. As part of its inquiry, the EC will look at cross-border trade in digital content and the Book Sellers Association hopes it will study issues around accessibility and interoperability in e-books.

I think the commission is basically looking at e-commerce in general and how innovation on a political level is moving at a snails pace. E-books are just one small segment of a much larger issue. However, with these initiatives, the devil is in the details. The Commission must make sure it is protecting firms from the risk of additional burdens and unintended consequences stemming from new regulation.

Will Europe Become a Single Market for e-books? is a post from: Good e-Reader

How Agency Pricing Has Affected the Bestseller Lists

Hugh Howey and Friends (that really should be a trademarked superhero team name, as you’ll see in a moment) has launched the sixth quarterly Author Earnings report, a seemingly flawless look at how ebooks are actually selling on Amazon. The reports have always served to try to get a better picture of how self-published authors are actually faring in the bookselling landscape, as well as prove that the mainstays of publishing are not the book barons they’re made out to be.

While many critics from all corners of the industry have taken issue with these reports, the math is quite simply sitting in front of their faces. The results of this quarter’s report have led to a startling look at what has happened to the Big Five publishers since winning their hard-won battle against Amazon to be allowed to set their own prices.

Spoiler alert: they’re losing their iron-fisted grip on the bestseller lists now that their prices have gone up.

According to the report,”Since we started pulling this data, the average price of an ebook from a Big 5 publisher has gone up 17%. Compare this to a difference of 5% for self-published titles, or the increase of 7.5% across Amazon imprints. The prices for Big 5 published ebooks have risen quite steadily, rather than a sudden surge since the return to agency.”

And now for the correlating shocker:

“In the last three months, the Big 5 publishers have seen a 26% reduction in the number of titles on Amazon's Best Seller lists. This means fewer titles are selling well enough to make these lists, and it also means fewer titles are receiving that added visibility.”

It’s interesting to see that consumers really do care about price. The long-standing belief has been that fine literature sells itself and readers are willing to pay for quality. That doesn’t appear to be the case across the board, especially in scarier economic times. What we also see is that consumers do read, but if the price is out of their reach, they’ll simply find some other work to enjoy now that there’s an abundance of titles to choose from.

For a solid yet condensed look at the May 2015 Author Earnings report, check out Passive Guy’s post, complete with many of the pie charts that the AE team is famous for. For the full report, click HERE to go to the AE site.

How Agency Pricing Has Affected the Bestseller Lists is a post from: Good e-Reader

Does Your Android or Blackberry App Need an Update?


The Good e-Reader Android and Blackberry App Store is the largest in Canada and in the top 10 globally. Developers and the site staff always uploading the best new apps from around the world. Sometimes apps are out of date and require an update, how do you get the latest version?

Good e-Reader has a system that allows you to automatically notify the App Store Admin Team and let them know an Android,  Blackberry 10, or Blackberry Playbook app needs an update.

Using the system is really easy! Every app has a version number and next to it is a notification flag. If you click on it, it automatically sends an email to the Good e-Reader App Store team and they make sure its promptly updated.

Does Your Android or Blackberry App Need an Update? is a post from: Good e-Reader